Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Ethical Issues

Every major company has or should have a code of ethics that its’ employees can abide by in order to accomplish the companies mission successfully. This code of ethics should include the Obligations of the employees, the Ideals or goals of the company and the Consequences of negative actions or performance of the employees. My prior company which I worked for was a cargo airline company that had code of ethics the human resource department created. There were some good statements provided, but human resources had no idea what was going on in the public sector, therefore, some of the ethical laws did not apply to all parties in the company. Companies need ethical policies, guidelines and restrictions, their ethical policies should be well promoted, well tailored to the company, companies’ mission, and the employees that run the company. Ethic statements should be easy to understand, be applicable, and able to motivate all types of attitudes.

The question remains, “Why do we need a code of ethics in our workplaces?” “Why don’t we just let people decide for themselves the type of ethical standards they should be governed by?” the simple reason is this; if we did not have guidelines that people must follow there would be chaos throughout the company. People are different; they come from all types of religious, cultures, and races, therefore, may have different views on how issues should be run. The purpose of an ethical statement is to make all races, religions and people’s differences work together applying certain parameters or guidelines for the benefit of the company. A company’s ethical statement also sets a positive work environment for its’ employees and helps to deal with everyday issues or distractions that might come about during day to day activity. Finally, it sets the standard to which employees can reference to when a problem or grievance occurs within the company; the ethical statement may be used to solve such issues. If we did not have a code of ethics then people would not know how to behave; they would be unaware of what is acceptable and unacceptable.

A good code of ethics is clear, easy to understand and applicable to its employees. For example “Someone would create an ethical statement explains that construction workers have to have the highest profession appearance at all times while performing their duties.” Sometimes, it might be better to make one set ethical statements for the entire company and then generate a separate sub-code of ethics for each department that is involved within the company, basing that code of ethics on the first one. This was not the case at my prior company. Human resources set up the code of ethics and had no idea that most of the content never applied to half the company. Furthermore, they had employees view it at the start of employment, sign it and then it was never seen again. To this day, I still cannot remember what was on that code of ethics nor have I ever had to run over it, but for the purpose of this paper I had one e-mailed to myself. The point is, in my opinion, the company should have had its’ ethical code posted on the wall for everyone to see. While they were daydreaming at work, glancing around the office, their eyes would glance at it enough times that their brain would recall it. If I were to take a survey on how well the employees at my old company new their Obligations, Ideals, and Consequences for their workplace, the outcome would be (I’m being generous) about half would have no idea. Awareness was definitely a concern with their particular ethical code. Another company I used to work for used to send their code of ethics over the e-mail and take advantage of new technology; they used to send it at one o’clock on Friday afternoon. This was great to take advantage of the new technology, but let’s be honest, who has the companies code of ethics on their mind at that time of the day and above all else that time of the week. The furthest thing from my mind on Friday afternoon was the company’s code of ethics; most people just used to hit the delete key, deleting the code of ethics permanently.

If I had a company, I would have the code of ethics up on the wall with some type of visual stimulation that was pleasant to view. I would have my Obligations, Ideals and Consequences become well known throughout my company. My employees would be so sick of hearing them they would abide by them just so they do not have to hear them again. If I had separate departments I would create a sub-code for the individual departments, For example if I had a sales department I would not put a statement like, “Employees must be on time each and every day, otherwise be subject to disciplinary action.” I would rephrase that statement to say, “Employees must meet their quota each and every week.” This way, my employees who work in the sales department will remain happy because they will set their own hours while I’m smiling because my production is being met.

At my last company, a negative influence was brought forth in the workplace, but nothing was ever stated on this subject in their code of ethics except that employees must respect one another. The negative influence was, “fraternization.” If this were my company, I would create an ethical statement that stated, “Romance has no part in the workplace and fraternizing with upper management will not be tolerated with the exception of company functions.” I would have my employees sign a disclosure understanding this ethical statement; that if suspected of having sexual relations with anyone in the company they will go under investigation and may be terminated for provable cause. This was a problem in my last company and I’m sure exists in so many large corporations. The females who were lazy, never made quota, never did their job resulting in someone else carrying their weight, always received the better reviews, the better perks and the least stress, for the simple fact that they were involved with the right people. Many employees quit the department because of this and were fed up working twice as hard for the same compensation in pay; we lost grade A workers this way. This was a negative influence in the work environment, but no one seemed to acknowledge this. If I were to improve this company’s ethical code, I would have it drawn up in more detail and made sure everyone was both aware of the code and able to understand the statements.

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  1. Sweet! I'll have to put this in my list of "watch for plagiarized papers" resources!

  2. Thanks for contributing to the degradation of higher education! Yes, yes, I know, if YOU don't offer this, someone else will. Such a claim does not justify the "rightness" of your site, however. That's like saying, "If I don't offer my kid drugs, someone else will."

    Sigh. I hope you sleep well at night. None of this will ever matter to you...until YOU are harmed, by someone applying the same principle to justify their actions.

    What principle you ask? Whatever principle you use to justify your actions here, dear plagiarized-paper writer. If you don't understand what I am saying, take an informal logic class.



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